OREANDA-NEWS. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called on Russia to «return to dialogue» with the European Union. Maas made this statement at a meeting with his EU counterparts in Brussels on Monday, May 10. «We are ready for dialogue, and it is time for Moscow to return to dialogue», the head of German diplomacy said.

He noted, that the European Union should not «change it's course aimed at protecting civil rights, including in Russia». Maas recalled, in particular, that on April 30, Russia closed the entry of eight citizens of the EU member states and representatives of official EU structures.

The list includes the head of the Berlin Prosecutor's Office, Jörg Raupach, the President of the European Parliament, David Maria Sassoli, as well as the Deputy Chairman of the European Commission on Values and Transparency, Vera Jurova, and the head of the Chemical, Biological, Radiation and Nuclear Safety Laboratory of the Swedish Total Defense Research Institute (FOI) Osu Scott.

Russia called the sanctions a response to the restrictive measures imposed on March 2 and 22 by the EU Council against a total of six Russian citizens involved in the persecution of opposition politician Alexei Navalny.